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The West Midlands will receive a share of the £150 million–the first part of a £1 billion investment into bus services from Network North–using savings from HS2 to improve more journeys for more people.
West Midlands Combined Authority will receive £16,604,000 from the funding pot. While it is up to local authorities in partnership with operators to decide how best to use the funding, the new funding for next year is enough to support up to 25 million miles of new bus services across the North and Midlands, helping local authorities provide more regular and reliable services or cheaper fares delivered through fare initiatives and ticket price caps. This funding comes on top of the Conservative Government’s unprecedented investment of over £3.5billion for the bus sector since March 2020 to support its recovery from the pandemic, drive improvements to local bus services and encourage more use of buses. The Conservative Government have also announced the £2 bus fare cap is extended across the country from next week until 31 December 2024.
Commenting, Mike Wood MP said “Taking the bus is the most popular form of public transport, which is why the Government is right to make the long-term decision to reinvest every penny of savings from HS2 into local transport. “The more than £16 million of funding for the West Midlands Combined Authority will be transformational for people across Dudley South, improving services and making them cheaper and more reliable. “Today’s announcement is only possible due to the long-term decision taken to redirect every penny of savings from HS2 in transport projects across the country–benefitting more people in more places, more quickly.”
Transport Secretary, Mark Harper said: “Buses are the most popular form of public transport, which is why we are continuing to back our buses with record high levels of funding–supporting vital bus services and offering affordable travel for passengers. “This increase in funding to deliver more reliable, frequent and affordable local bus services–and to extend the £2 bus fare cap–has only been possible with the redirected HS2 funding secured by this government making the right long-term decisions for a brighter future.”
Taking the bus is the most popular form of public transport, which is why the Government is right to make the long-term decision to reinvest every penny of savings from HS2 into local transport